And It Begins….

So, as many of you know, I have a five year old son who is in Pre-K this year. So far, the school year has went pretty well without any major instances. However, yesterday I experienced something I really didn’t expect to experience until my son was older…if at all.


Before I get into what happened, I need to explain the teacher’s “disciplinary” tactics for the Pre-K students. Everything is made to be fun these days, so every child starts the day out with a sticker and if they are good all day long, then they don’t lose the sticker. However, if they are warned twice and bad behavior doesn’t stop, they lose their sticker and a note is sent home to the parents.

My husband and I are not the kind of parents who don’t discipline our children at home. If our son gets a note sent home from school, then he is in trouble at home too. Yesterday, the little guy got a note sent home because he was talking too much. (This is believable because my son is a chatterbox.) So, when he got home, after we talked to him, he was sent to his room without a snack and had to take a nap.

He had been down for a nap for about 30 minutes when my phone rang. When I answered it, a woman on the other end introduced herself and launched into a story about how her son is in my son’s class and “this is the second time this week he has gotten a note sent home because your son is influencing him to do bad things.” I have to tell you, it was all I could do not to laugh at her when she said this. However, she was upset so I refrained.

Basically, the deal was that her son apparently isn’t that outgoing and is quiet most of the time, but he received a note on Monday and Friday for talking at inappropriate times and the note stated that he is normally good, but has been around others who are influencing his behavior. By the end of the conversation, I had the woman calmed down. I explained to her that my son had only received a note yesterday for talking and that I understand her concern, but I don’t know how to fix the issue on her end. All I can do is talk to my son.

However, I did tell her that we had problems similar to this last year when our son first started school. We handled it by telling our son that we don’t care what the other kids are doing, if he knows something is wrong and he could get in trouble he needs to make sure not to join in in the bad behavior. That was my way of telling her, “I’m sorry, but your son is still responsible for his actions. My son isn’t making your son do anything.” However, I did tell her that I would be sure to talk to my son when he woke up about how his actions can affect his friends.

She was pleasant when we ended the conversation and thanked me for not getting defensive and reassured me that she wasn’t trying to point fingers, just that she was trying to get to the bottom of what was going on.

I guess, the point of this blog post is that I really never expected to receive a phone call from another upset parent in Pre-K blaming my son for her son’s behavior. I mean, good grief they’re five and still learning self-control. Anyways, I don’t think I’m the only parent out there who believes that every child is responsible for their actions, am I?

Yes, I agree that my son was talking to him when he shouldn’t have been, but the other child needs to learn that if he joins in in the conversation, then he could get in trouble. Just like my son needs to learn that he can’t be talking when the teacher is talking, even if one of his friends is talking to him.

I guess I’m looking at this incident from a broad point of view, because I really feel that this is part of what is wrong with our kids today. Their parents are too eager to point the finger somewhere other than at their child when their child gets in trouble. It teaches children nothing about being responsible for their own actions, but instead teaches them how to blame others in order to get out of trouble. I guess that’s just the world we are living in today so I better get used to it. All I can do is raise my child in the manner I feel is best. I just didn’t expect these types of issues to arise so soon…

The Finishing Touch

So, you have a formal event coming up and your little ones are going to attend. More than likely you’re thinking about when you are going to find the time to take the little ones shopping for a new dress and/or suit. This is a valid concern, especially if you have a busy schedule outside of work. You can simplify that process if you take my advice and shop online for the kids’ formalwear. And, to make it even quicker…make it a one-stop online shopping trip and shop at Kidsformal.com for all of your little ones’ outfits.

Well, that’s all there is to it, right? Nope. Finding the kids’ formal wear is just part of preparing them for a formal event. There are always a few extra finishing touches that you will need to take care of before the big event. Below you will find the most common finishing touches for both boys and girls. (Keep in mind, that these are just suggestions…by no means are you required to do all of them when getting your little ones prepared for a formal occasion. They are only meant to be a helpful guide.)

Boys:

  • Haircut and Style – It’s always a good idea to take your little man to the barber a day or two before a formal occasion and have his hair trimmed up. Then, if you like, once the formal attire has been put on, add a little gel to his hair and style it to ensure it looks great all night (or day) long!
  • Cologne – A lot of parents don’t see the need for little boys to wear cologne to formal events. While it’s not a necessity, I like to let my little guy wear some “smell good” to these special occasions. Why? Because he sees his daddy put cologne on when he’s getting ready for a special event and by letting him join in, it makes him feel special too.

Girls:

  • Haircut and Style – Just like with little boys, it may be necessary to take your little girl and have her hair trimmed before the day of the formal occasion. Depending on how formal the event is, you may want to have it done the day of and have her hair professionally styled. If so, make sure you schedule an appointment a few weeks in advance to ensure it gets done!
  • Nails and Toes – While you don’t have to take your little one to get a professional manicure and/or pedicure, you will want to take the time to file her nails down and paint them with a nail polish that compliments the dress she is wearing. If she will be wearing closed-toe shoes, then filing and painting the toes isn’t necessary.
  • Makeup and Perfume – No, you don’t need to put a lot of makeup on your little one for a formal event. If your daughter is pretty young, I wouldn’t even worry about it. But if she’s old enough to see you put on your makeup, it would make her feel special if you would put a hint of eye shadow and lip gloss on her. The same goes for perfume. Just one squirt will be enough to make her feel like a lady.

Practical Uses for Used Clothing

I’m not sure about you, but I get awful tired of cleaning out the closets every year. I know this is just part of life, especially for those of us with growing kids, but I HATE it! Cleaning out the closets isn’t the hard part…it’s deciding what to do with the clothing that is getting removed from the closets. We all know how easy it is to get stuck with a pile of clothing we don’t know what to do with. Well, since spring is almost here I thought it would be appropriate to write a blog giving practical uses for used clothing.

  • Riches to Rags – Most of the old clothing I find myself stuck with are old t-shirts that my kids, husband or even I don’t care to wear anymore. If it’s a shirt that came from my husband or I it’s probably because the shirt has gotten a hole in it or something because we both get attached to our t-shirts! For these old shirts and other items like them, I cut them up and make rags out of them. Did you know old t-shirts make amazing dust rags? They are actually my favorite dust rags to use because they don’t leave any type of “lint” behind like a lot of the store bought rags.
  • Play Clothes – For the kids, some of the things I remove from their closets get taken out because they just don’t wear them out much. It’s not necessarily that they’ve outgrown the clothes but they just aren’t considered “school worthy.” Some of these clothes go from the closet rack to the dresser drawer. The clothes that are folded in the dresser are for the kids (keep in mind I have two boys) to wear outside to play in. I don’t care if these clothes get grass stains or mud on them or even a hole. They are strictly for playing outside at home in!
  • Dress Up – If you have girls at home, then you may find yourself with a lot of old dresses. A lot of little girls like to play dress up from time to time, especially when they have friends over. You may want to consider putting these dresses (as long as they are still semi-fitting) in a trunk along with some of your old jewelry, shoes and handbags.
  • Second Hand Store – Finally, if I’m left with clothing that I’m not going to make rags out of, use for play clothes or store for later, I will sort through the clothes and take the not-so-worn items to the second hand store. There is always going to be someone out there who will be delighted to wear the items my family doesn’t need any longer. The items that I have that are well worn that won’t make good rags usually end up in the dumpster.

Valentine’s Day Party Ideas

Are you looking to do something new this year with your little ones? Maybe you want to start a fun family tradition that doesn’t occur during the normal months of October, November and/or December? Then, why not host a Valentine’s Day party for your young ones and their close friends?

I’m not sure why, but it seems like most holidays fall by the waste side after Christmas…at least for most adults. I’ll be honest, I never thought about a Valentine’s Day party until my son entered pre-K this year and we had to sign up to help with one of the class parties and Valentine’s Day happened to be one of them! So, guess who is helping with the pre-K Valentine’s Day party this year?

I’m not a big “party” person, but after doing some research looking for Valentine’s Day party ideas, I am getting a little excited about helping with this party. I’ve also gotten a lot of ideas for a Valentine’s Day party at my house where my little guy can invite a few of his friends over. Below are a few of the ideas I’ve come across in case you are looking to do something fun at home for your little one (and a few of his/her friends) this Valentine’s Day.

  • Make Valentine’s for Mom & Dad. A lot of young kids don’t get the opportunity to go shopping for a Valentine’s day gift for mom and dad. Therefore, why not set up a table at your house during the party where the little ones can make their own special gifts for mom and dad? It doesn’t have to be anything expensive…maybe just pieces of construction paper folded in half to make a card with an array of Valentine’s Day themed stickers and washable markers for the little ones to decorate the cards with. Or, stores like Hobby Lobby offer affordable Valentine’s Day crafts in bulk for kids’ ages 4 and up that make cute little gifts for parents.
  • Cookie Baking and Decorating. You will want to prepare sugar cookie dough before the party goers arrive. Then, when the time is right, break out the dough and roll it out. Give the kids heart shaped cookie cutters and let them cut their cookies out and place them on a greased cookie sheet. Then bake. Once the cookies come out and are cool to the touch, let the kids decorate them with icing and sprinkles.
  • Pinata Game. End the day with a Valentine’s Day piñata. Let the kids take turns being blindfolded and trying to hit the piñata. Each child gets a minute to hit the piñata. The turns keep going until the piñata breaks and all the candy falls out. The kids can grab goodie bags and fill with the candy to take home with them!

Formal Attire Ideas for Boys

While I absolutely love being the mother of two boys, I have to admit that I get pretty irritated when I walk into department stores looking for clothes for them. Why? Mainly because there are only a few racks to choose from and, worse, almost all of the department stores carry practically the same styles and colors of clothes. There just doesn’t seem to be much variety in boys clothing like there is with girls. I probably wouldn’t get so irritated with the selection if I wasn’t able to look across the aisle at the girls’ section and see that it is more than triple the size of the boys section. That’s what bothers me.

It isn’t that my boys don’t have enough variety to wear in their normal, “everyday” clothes, it’s the formal clothing that lacks in department stores. I guess they think that every little boy wants to wear the exact same suit and dress shirt as every other boy in the same town. Needless, to say, over the few years I have figured out a few tips when it comes to formalwear and my son…because I hate buying the same thing as everyone else. After all, he’s an individual so he needs a little originality, right? Below are a few ideas for formalwear if you have boys.

  • Order online. If you must have a formal suit or tuxedo for your little man, then skip the local shopping and go online. The worldwide web is the only place where you will find the variety you’re looking for. Plus, you can usually get a better-looking outfit for less money when you shop online too!
  • Don’t say “no” to sweater vests. There are some people who don’t like sweater vests because they think they look too “preppy.” Trust me, I know; I’m married to one of them. However, sweater vests give your little guy versatility. Generally, there is more than one color in a sweater vest, which means you can get several outfits out of it when you buy matching solid color dress shirts to pair it with.
  • Khaki pants and plaid shorts work! Your little guy doesn’t have to be limited to dress slacks when he’s “dressing up.” Khaki pants look great with a collared shirt…and so do nice, plaid shorts. Have you ever wondered what the big deal about Sperry shoes is all about? Well, they can look good with slacks, but when bought in the right color and style, they can also look amazing with khaki pants and plaid shorts too.